Cast members from the music-filled Broadway musical Motown — including Brandon Victor Dixon and 2013 Tony nominee Valisia LeKae — were featured in the 90-minute program. The company offered such tunes as "Stop In the Name of Love," "My Girl," "Get Ready" and "Dancing in the Street."
Broadcast live from the West Lawn of the U.S. Capitol, the evening also featured the talents of Barry Manilow, Neil Diamond, Candice Glover, Scotty McCreery, Darren Criss, Jackie Evancho, Megan Hilty, John Williams, The National Symphony Orchestra and Maestro Jack Everly.
In celebration of America’s 236th birthday, the show closed with Tchaikovsky’s “1812 Overture” complete with live cannon fire provided by The United States Army Presidential Salute Battery. Also participating in the event were The Choral Arts Society of Washington, along with The U.S. Army Herald Trumpets, The U.S. Army Ceremonial Band, the U.S. Air Force Ceremonial Band, members of the Armed Forces carrying the state and territorial flags and the Joint Armed Forces Color Guard provided by the Military District of Washington, D.C.
"A Capitol Fourth" was heard live over NPR member stations nationwide and was broadcast to U.S. military personnel in more than 175 countries and aboard 140 U.S. Navy ships at sea on the American Forces Network.